Any buzz about who will get the third dance slot for Russia?
Im especially interested in what Russian boards are saying. Do R/T have that 3rd spot locked up or will it be a real competition at Nationals. They have managed to hold on to that spot this whole cycle, in spite of doing nothing really with it. Last season I saw glimpses of improvement from them I thought, but by Worlds that flash was gone, and this season they looked slow and lifeless. I dont think they have improved that much at all in 4 years. Is the Russian Fed still committed to this team or are they willing to give one of their younger teams a chance. They have several teams I think look a lot more promising -
Sin/Zig - My 1st choice for that third slot. I just WISH they'd change their coach before it's too late. IMO this is the team with the most potential of all the bronze contenders. She esp is a throwback to the kind of ice dancer that made Russian skating famous - dramatic, emotional and riveting. Somehow, this couple even made those D/W-cloned programs come to life. Imagine what they could do with decent choreography and a technical coach like Spilband.
I really want to see this couple on the world team - but Im torn about it. Im afraid if they make the team with the coach they have, they'll never leave her. I was praying they'd leave last year but no such luck.
Step/Bukin - I loved this team's programs at SA even though they didnt perform they well. Are they still skating junior as well, or just senior? At the end of last season they were thinking of doing both. She is getting better year by year, but he is so much better as a dancer that I wonder if she will ever reach his level. That is the only problem I have with this team - I feel she will always be holding him back a bit. But that is the same with R/T - he is so much better than she is. I wonder if Sin/Bukin would ever consider competing together [altho I like Zig, so part of me wants them to stay together - Im conflicted].
Monko/Khal - I never really liked this team that much. On TV they looked slow and a bit clumsy. But I saw them live at the WTT and I was really surprised. She had more presence and fire on the ice than anyone else, they werent slow - in fact seemed about the same speed as W/P, and they were the best at keeping their speed constant throughout the program.
It's a shame this just doesnt come across well on TV [at least not to me], because I think it will keep them from picking up as big a fan base as they might otherwise have. I hope they keep improving and eventually get their chance at Worlds.
I think Russian dance is bottlenecked right now. They have at least 3 talented young teams that deserve a chance, but no room for them - either this year or over the next 4 years as I dont think any of R/T, I/K or B/S are going to retire after Sochi. So if the Fed doesnt drop someone, will these teams just flounder in oblivion? Is it time to consider changing nationalities?
Russians must be discussing these questions too - what's the consensus over there?
Sinitsina/Bukin tandem would go wonders
they are a bit with unequal partners with Stepanova and Zhiganshin
i notice they have simpler lifts done with Stepanova and Zhiganshin can barely lift Sinitsina